Tuesday 6 August – The excitement of Digicel Cup finals rugby isn’t only gripping the four teams that have made it into the semifinals but top Fiji Rugby referees have also started preparing for the big stage matches.
Ten top referees from the Southern and Eastern areas gathered in Suva for a one day training and team-building exercise last week ahead of the busy season-end of the Digicel Cup this month.
“We need to tune-up for the big games, physical and mental preparation on our part is very important as the referees play an integral part in any rugby match,” said the training coordinator and Digicel brand ambassador, Mr. James Bolabiu.
The referee’s team started their day at the FASANOC Headquarters in Suva under-going through a thorough two-hour technical session which included a lot of game reviews from the past 6 rounds of the Digicel Cup competition. Referees were shown the calls they made using video clips and later analyzing it before going through procedures to construct a game plan for controlling a match.
The “BIG 5” took center-stage in the technical session with a lot of positive discussion centering on scrum, offside, maul formation, tackle area and foul play.
“Our referees need to be very strict and they must follow strict procedures and guidelines set out by the International Rugby Board to be followed in dealing with the issue of the game,” said Mr. Bolabiu.
The second-phase of the training was held in Deuba, Pacific Harbour where the 10-member panel went through a fitness and endurance check, going through hill and beach runs.
The panel finished off the day long camp with team-building activities in Suva. They were split in two groups and took on each other in xbox 360 kinetic sensor video games.
“The whole exercise was very beneficial to the referees, everyone was keen to share their views and learnt from each other in the technical session and then the effort during the fitness and the team building sessions were indications that this panel is ready to take control of the business end of the Digicel Cup,” said Mr. Bolabiu.
KaveniTalemaivalagi who took part in the one-day training program will control the first Digicel Cup semifinal match this Saturday.